I’ve been expanding my interests as an agent from MG and YA to include books for the littler crowd. I’ve found some incredible author-illustrators whose work is so amazing I can’t even describe, and I want more.* Especially since editors who’ve seen the quality picture books I rep keep asking for them.

My tastes vary and are somewhat random and all over the place. This list will likely evolve as I think of other things that pique my interest. It’s not a catchall—I’ve fallen in love with art and styles I never would have imagined until they showed up in my inbox, so don’t be afraid to query if you’re not sure. I also love getting picture book texts, so use this as a guide to see what kinds of stories I like, even if you can’t illustrate.*

A visual collections of illustration styles and picture books I’d love to see:

 

Funny/Clever

Mélanie Watt

Chester, Mélanie Watt  Scaredy Squirrel, Mélanie Watt

Rob Scotton

Russell the Sheep, Rob Scotton

 

Subversive

Jon Klassen

I Want My Hat Back, Jon Klassen

John Scieska/Lane Smith

Stinky Cheese Man

 

Sparse/Minimalist

Chris Appelhans

 Sparky!

Nilah Magruder
(one of my author-illustrators; Fox Hunt forthcoming from Feiwel & Friends in 2016)

Fox Hunt, Nilah Magruder

Lively/Fun
(often with bright colors)

Dan Santat

Beckle, Dan Santat

Chris Barton

Shark vs. Train

 

Adorable

Ashley Evanson (yes, she is another of my author-illustrators)

Hello, San Francisco by Ashley Evanson  Hello, Paris by Ashley Evanson

Keith Baker

LMNO Peas, Keith Baker

Innovative/Interactive

Hervé Tullet

Hervé Tullet, Press Here

Jon Stone/Mike Smollin

Monster at the End of This Book

 

Whimsical

David Wiesner

Tuesday, David Wiesner  Sector 7, David Wiesner

Shaun Tan

Shaun Tan, Lost Thing  Shaun Tan, Arrival

 

Dark/Morbid

Edward Gorey

Edward Gorey, Gashlycrumb Tinies

Neil Gaiman/Dave McKean

Wolves in the Walls, Neil Gaiman

 

Pop Surrealism (Lowbrow)

Nicoletta Ceccoli

Nicoletta Ceccoli, Dignity of Dragons  Beautiful Nightmares, Nicoletta Ceccoli

Rébecca Dautremer

Secret Lives of Princesses

 

Gothic

[See also: Edward Gorey, above]

Emily the Strange (Rob Reger)

Emily the Strange

Ruby Gloom series

Ruby Gloom

 

Art Nouveau/Art Deco

Alphonse Mucha

Alphonse Mucha

Erté

Erté

Not so much:

Perhaps I should note some of the kinds of picture books I’m NOT interested in.

  • holiday stories (if it’s spooky but not tied directly to Halloween, I’ll allow it)
  • religious
  • preachy
  • trying to teach a moral or lesson
  • sappy or overly cheesy (clever, yes; cheesy, no)
  • rhyming (very rarely do I like rhyming picture books)
  • imitating Dr Seuss (no one will ever do it as well as him, so don’t try)

*We won’t discuss my jealousy that some people can both write and illustrate. I’ll stick to my coloring books for now. (No, seriously. Johanna Basford’s Enchanted Forest is my current obsession.)

 

NOTE: The comment section of this post is NOT the place to pitch me your picture book. Instead, refer to my query guidelines.

ALSO NOTE: I don’t rep most of the books listed here; they’re simply used as examples of what I’d like to see.